The Centre for Drug Research and Development, a unique hybrid organization that helps health researchers collaborate, refine their discoveries and develop them for commercial use, received an additional $8 million in funding for its core facility. This investment matches the $8 million Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) grant CDRD received last November. It also comes on the heels of a $25 million funding grant from the Province of BC announced last month by Premier Gordon Campbell at the 2007 British Columbia Life Sciences Awards. This brings the total investment in CDRD to $50 million and provides the needed funding to build and operate this pioneering core facility. The Centre will serve to connect researchers and trainees across BC, providing a collaborative and cooperative environment that will amplify and advance important discoveries to the stage where they can attract the funding required for clinical trials.

“The Province of British Columbia clearly understands the importance of accelerating the development of promising new medical discoveries to a point where they can benefit British Columbians, Canadians and people around the world,” said Natalie Dakers, chief executive officer for CDRD. “This funding provides much needed infrastructure support which will allow us to create a template to advance early stage health- related discoveries from lab bench to the bedside.”

The CDRD aims to advance early stage health-related discoveries through the core activities of drug discovery, design and synthesis, screening, in vitro and in vivo testing, and drug formulation and evaluation. It also provides a new research and training model that will broaden the B.C. pool of biotech entrepreneurs working on drug discovery and development.